On xe.com, I see the exchange rate to be: USD/AUD = 1.03916.
My local bank will sell me AUD for 1.0807 w/o any other fees. Obviously, they are making 4% on the deal. Is that reasonable?
I would like to have some AUD when I arrive in Australia for immediate cab and other expenses. Should I buy some before I go? Does anyone know what rates are currently offered by the exchange places in the Sydney airport?
My credit card will charge me 1% on all foreign transactions (other CC I have are 2.5 to 2.7% which I want to avoid). I read that many merchants/hotels, etc. will also charge 1 to 1.5% on every credit card transaction. So I want to avoid it if possible for some expenses. I'm going to have to use it for hotels and other large purchases since I don't want to carry that much cash around.
My bank won't charge me an ATM fee so I plan on using it as much as possible. Actually they will reimburse me for any ATM fees from withdrawals at other banks. I just don't know if their exchange rate is favorable compared to credit card rates. How do I find out before my trip? Of course the rates will change but at least I can compare current rates for various options as of today.
I'd appreciate any suggestions.